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Neighbors concerned about private vacant lot at 214 E. Fort Ave

Neighbors concerned about private vacant lot at 214 E. Fort Ave
Posted at 4:31 PM, Jul 15, 2021

BALTIMORE — A private vacant lot in South Fed Hill is creating more than an eyesore for local neighbors.

"It's a hazard," said Jeffrey Ferrentino. "There are rodents scurrying about under all that grass."

WMAR-2 News learned about the property after Ferrentino took to social media to get the property cleaned up.

"I specifically moved to the city so I wouldn't have to do yard work and now I'm looking to get a group together to have to take care of someone else's property."

Ferrentino and neighbors have called 311 on multiple occasions.

"We check and the case is often closed with no resolution or explanation," he said.

"It’s just not attractive look in a community where you want to foster inclusivity and you want your neighbors to be involved," said neighbor Melissa Evans. "This just does not send a good message."

A check of records show the property is owned by Metropolitan Asset Management, LLC out of Virginia.

"I understand if you're out of state," said Evans. "I’m sure it’s tough but you still have a responsibility to the city and to the neighborhood to maintain your home, your property."

According to the Department of Housing and Community Development the property owner has been cited in the past for unsanitary conditions, tall grass, and weeds.

During our coverage, an inspector with the Housing Department came out to document the property.

"DPW crews will now have to come out," the inspector said.

"If it's not done, we're going to have to do it ourselves," said Ferrentino.

It appears neighbors won't have to.

After an email to DPW and DHCD a spokesperson said a crew will be out tomorrow to take care of the property.

The joint statement read:

"The owners of 214 E. Fort Avenue have been cited for unsanitary conditions, high grass and weeds in the past. Our records show persistent logs of grass above 8 inches as well as trash and debris noted on the lot.

Presently, there is an outstanding exterior notice for grass above 8 inches. A mowing request has been submitted and City workers were at this site again as recently as yesterday noting trash on the property.

DPW crews plan to have the site mowed and cleaned tomorrow. We will continue to work to hold the owners responsible for upkeep and for all costs incurred by the City related to their property."